About the Play
Renegade researcher Craig Venter develops a controversial “shotgun” technique for sequencing DNA, then quits the NIH over an institutional lack of imagination. He quickly makes a fortune in the private sector, and becomes simultaneously the most loved and hated scientist in the world.
A folksy doctor named Francis Collins inherits the U.S. government’s Human Genome Project. When his victory in the sequencing race is threatened by Venter, he quickly makes the transition from apparent bumpkin to fierce competitor.
Journalist Kellie Silverstein cuts her teeth on the biggest science story of all time, while simultaneously running a race with her own mortality.
In the competition to sequence the human genome, will the grand prize be the public good or private profit? And how will three people, amid the frenzied race to determine what makes a human being, discover their humanity?
|2008||Pasadena, CA||Theatre@Boston Court|
|2007||La Jolla, CA||The Salk Institute|
|2004||San Francisco||The Exploratorium|
Awards and Mentions
- LA Weekly Pick of the Week
- BACKSTAGE Pick
- Nominated for LA Weekly Award for Best Director
- Nominated for LA Weekly Award for Best Ensemble
- Nominated for LA Weekly Award for Best Production Design
“In a very pleasing twist of expectations, some fiercely human, comic moments make for breathtaking dramatic tension…. Mullin’s often outlandish explanations of the subject make for fascinating rapid-fire entertainment that moves from childlike storytelling to music hall and beyond.”
“Stylish and imaginatively realized… the story is part allegory, part real-life journalism…. Mullin explores our need for knowledge and power, as well as our reluctance to know too much of our fates…. It’s amazing how nobly brilliant yet painfully self-destructive we, a bag of complex molecules, can be…”
“The plays of Paul Mullin are different. He believes it’s possible—and dramatically necessary – to explore and explain the science that drives his characters’ lives.”
--NPR’s Morning Edition
“The play is funny, thoughtful, and in the end a good reminder that science… is fueled by everything that makes us human.”
--BIO IT World
“Science interjects itself throughout the play, but the dichotomy between Collins and Venter is at the crux of the comedy.”
--The Washington Post